Former New Orleans Saints linebacker Ronald Powell died on Monday at the age of 32.
No cause of death was immediately available, The Times-Picayune of New Orleans reported Tuesday.
Powell, who was from Riverside, California, was one of the most sought-after players in the nation coming out of Rancho Verde High School in 2010, ranking as the No. 1 overall recruit by Rivals and 247Sports.
The five-star prospect signed with the University of Florida and played four seasons under head coaches Urban Meyer and Will Muschamp.
Powell was a former five star recruit and the #1 recruit overall in the country in the class of 2010, Powell is also the highest ranked recruit in Florida Gators history.
Powell college numbers.
79 tackles | 18.5 tackles for loss
— CFBLIVE247 (@CFBLive247_) January 16, 2024
Powell was drafted by the Saints in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL draft and saw limited playing time in his lone season with the franchise.
He was released before the start of the 2015 season.
Powell spent time with the Chicago Bears and Seattle Seahawks practice squads but never saw a regular season field after his rookie year.
He ended his professional career with two total tackles.
Powell has been remembered on social media by those who knew him or followed his career — including former Saints teammate Junior Galette:
I Love You Forever till we meet again an EXCELLENT FATHER Respected Brother and a Loving Son I am saddened to shared with the rest of the world that Ronald Powell Transitioned Earlier today. REST IN POWER RONALD POWELL ….. pic.twitter.com/Rx9dS7J4S5
— SACKMAN LIVES (@JuniorGalette93) January 15, 2024
We’re very saddened to learn about the passing of former Gators player Ronald Powell.
Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones. pic.twitter.com/3a55C4cHWn
— Florida Gators Football (@GatorsFB) January 16, 2024
Rest in Peace to Ronald Powell, the former No. 1 overall player in the Class of 2010.
Our thoughts are with his friends and family 🙏 pic.twitter.com/8mGJfyWOUh
— Rivals (@Rivals) January 16, 2024
— NFLPA Former Players (@NFLPAFmrPlayers) January 16, 2024
The Times-Picayune spoke to Powell in 2014 after he was drafted by the Saints.
He described the anxiety of waiting to be chosen by an NFL team.
“It was a wonderful feeling, because you’re sitting there and you don’t know when your name is going to be called,” Powell said.
“To get a call from Sean Payton was a great experience because being here with the Saints, you get a chance to go to the playoffs and compete for a championship every year,” he said. “So obviously they got a great mentality that defensive players want to play for. So I was all on board.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.